Gianforte, Pro-Bullock PAC pouring money into MT’s gov race

Republican gubernatorial candidate Greg Gianforte has poured another $640,000 of his own money into his campaign, upping his total personal contributions to $1.7 million – about half his overall campaign funds.

But Gianforte wasn’t the only one who opened his checkbook in Montana’s gubernatorial race last month.

Good Jobs Montana, an independent political action committee formed to support Democratic Gov. Steve Bullock and oppose Gianforte, took in $800,000 in August, from two unions groups and Democratic Governors Association (DGA).

Good Jobs Montana has already spent about $850,000 this year on ads attacking Gianforte.

Bullock’s campaign also hasn’t been short of its own cash this year.

He reported raising another $270,000 last month, increasing his overall take to nearly $2.5 million, mostly from individuals. Bullock hasn’t put any of his own money into the campaign.

“Steve’s campaign remains incredibly grateful of the support from hard-working Montana families across the state,” said his campaign manager Eric Hyers. “Montanans are chipping in because they trust Steve as their governor to bring people together, get things done and keep Montana great for future generations.”

In addition to his own cash, Gianforte also raised $188,000 from individual donors last month, bringing his donor total to nearly $1.65 million.

“Greg is incredibly thankful for the outpouring of support that allowed him to out-raise his opponent for three of the last four reporting periods, with 90 percent of the donations coming from Montanans,” said Gianforte campaign spokesman Aaron Flint.

Libertarian Ted Dunlap is also in the race, but has been largely invisible on the campaign trail.

With just over two months until election day, here’s a summary of the fundraising by Gianforte and Bullock, in what’s become one of the top competitive gubernatorial races in the country:

  • Bullock enters the final stretch with $1.3 million in his campaign account, having spent about $1.15 million of the $2.5 million he’s raised. Last month, the campaign raised $270,000, including about $22,000 from political-action committees (PACs).
  • Gianforte’s campaign has raised a total of $3.34 million, including the $1.7 million in his own money. The remainder has come from individuals, since he is not accepting PAC money.
  • Gianforte has spent slightly more than $3 million of his campaign funds, leaving himself just $271,000 in the bank as of Aug. 27.
  • Both Gianforte and Bullock spent more than $400,000 last month on TV ad production and air time, as the campaigns ramp up for the final weeks until election day.
  • Good Jobs Montana has raised $1.65 million and spent all but $440,000 as of last week, financing several anti-Gianforte ads. Its big donors last month were the DGA, the American Federation of Teachers and the National Educators Association Advocacy Fund, all out of Washington, D.C.